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Help! What happened to receivers that could drive 4 speakers?

 

Klondike
Unregistered guest
Everything out there (that I can afford) has output for only 2 speakers, or 5 or more speakers for the surround sound stuff. I just want a receiver with enough power and channels to run 4 speakers (Like the Good Ol Days). Do I have any options? I'm desperate enough to try running all 4 speakers through 2 channels, but would like to avoid adding resistors and cooking amps. My problem is that the surround sound systems primarily play all the music from the main and center speakers, but the guys at the other end of the bar (near the rear or 'surround speakers') get little sound at all. I need 4 speakers jamming together, all with the same signal input. Somebody, please help the old idiot out!
 

Silver Member
Username: Elitefan1

Post Number: 976
Registered: Dec-03
Buy a receiver that has A/B speaker inputs and switching ability. I assume you are going to run the same source material on all 4 speakers? Just hook up the speakers to front A and B and turn both on and you are done. Almost all receivers can do this.
 

Klondike
Unregistered guest
That was where I started. Unfortunately, I forgot about that pesky Ohm's Law thing. With four 8 ohm speakers and the A/B switch set for A and B, the impedance drops to 2 ohms for a receiver that wants 8 ohms. Suddenly, my 100 watt receiver is cranking out a few hundred watts...until a spark of light and a puff of smoke signal the death of another amp. Can I just add some resistors to compensate for the fatal drop in resistance?
 

Silver Member
Username: Elitefan1

Post Number: 977
Registered: Dec-03
I run my Elite 45 with my mains and B's for hours at a time and have done so with all of my receivers in my current house[19 years] and have never had a problem. There is no reason a good receiver can't drive four speakers in stereo or direct mode at loud volumes for hours without strain. As I said I have done it for years with many different brands of receivers. The better the power supply the easier it is for a reciever to do this and Elite, Marantz,H/K, NAD and Rotel have great power supplies so I don't see this being a problem at all. I have even in my forgetfulness left my mains in surround mode and turned on my B's in the kitchen and had all seven speakers cranked up for a couple hours or more and no problem.
 

Klondike
Unregistered guest
Thanks! It's good to know there is hope. By the way, are any of those receivers less than a couple hundred bucks? Everything I've tried so far was...Sony and JVC for example. At deafening volumes for extended periods, they have both cooked. Do I just need to spend more money? And, thanks again for the help.
 

Indianspringsaz
Unregistered guest
Used NAD will do fine
 

Klondike
Unregistered guest
So what is the budget for some of the things you guys mentioned? I can tell by my unfamiliarity with the afore mentioned names that you guys have much better quality stuff than I'm accustomed too. Given that my four speakers are likely also of lesser quality, can anybody think of a specific receiver with channels (not simply a parallel A/B switch) for two sets of speakers that is under $200? I need a cheap and temporary solution until the major system upgrade, which will begin with quality speakers and a good receiver. Anybody?
 

Klondike
Unregistered guest
Somebody help! I'm so tired of returning cooked receivers to the store from which they came. Does anybody know of a $200 receiver that would solve my problem? A brand name, model, anything?
 

WB
Unregistered guest
Klondike

Try buying a Niles Audio speaker switcher. With this you can input the main speaker out terminals from your amp, and then run up to 4 sets of speakers from the switcher. It has circuitry that prevents the load from dropping below 4 ohms. Add it to the receiver of your choice and you're in business. The hi power switcher does cost maybe a couple of hundred, but it will definitely solve your problem. And regardless of what you hear, NEVER try to drive both the A & B outs of your amp at the same time at high loads.
 

Silver Member
Username: Elitefan1

Post Number: 988
Registered: Dec-03
WB,
Tell me what you consider a "high" load.
 

Klondike
Unregistered guest
Thanks guys. I don't mind spending the $200, and I think the receivers that I can afford will operate at 4 ohms. 2 ohms gets a little smokey! Now I have a brand name to pursue so the experiments can continue. You know, it wasn't that long ago when every receiver in nearly any store was just what I'm looking for now. Oh, how the times change. Where is a tube amp when you need one? Thanks again for everyone's input.
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